National Tree Day News - Into The Wild, A Virtual Adventure to Save Rainforests

Into The Wild, A Virtual Adventure to Save Rainforests

Date: 09-Mar-17
Author: Claire Bell

Image Credit: ArtScience Museum © Claire Bell

Image Credit: ArtScience Museum

A virtual rainforest has taken over the ArtScience museum in Singapore. Visitors can immerse themselves in the rainforest thanks to some amazing technology which highlights the need to fight deforestation in South East Asia.

Into the Wild is a virtual adventure which transforms over 1000 square metres of the museum’s space over multiple levels. The aim of the adventure is to immerse visitors in a lush digital world, where they will encounter some of the most endangered inhabitants of the Southeast Asian rainforest and learn about the challenges they face in their fight for survival. Visitors observe animals in their (simulated?)natural habitat and take action to defend the environment from destruction, including taking an active role in replanting the rainforests of South East Asia.

When visitors plant a virtual tree and accompany it with a pledge to WWF, a real tree will be planted in Rimbang Baling – one of the last pristine rainforests in Sumatra and a vital territory for the critically endangered Sumatran tigers.

“In a time of rampant deforestation in Southeast Asia, Into the Wild sends a critical conservation call for the growth and renewal of our natural environment. Only with collective action can we effect positive change, restore rainforest biodiversity, protect tiger habitats and transform the lives of communities and millions across West Sumatra and Riau,” said Elaine Tan, Chief Executive Officer, WWF-Singapore.

The virtual adventure is made possible through a collaboration with Google, Lenovo, WWF and Singapore artist, Brian Gothong Tan, in association with Panasonic and Qualcomm. Visitors navigate the rainforest in the role of a ranger using Lenovo’s Phab 2 Pro, the world’s first Tango-enabled smartphone, powered by the Qualcomm® Snapdragon™652, platform. This experience is made possible by Tango’s area learning, depth sensing, and motion tracking capabilities. The adventure then culminates in a cinematic experience created by filmmaker, Brian Gothong Tan.

Into the Wild underscores the urgency of rainforest conservation in Southeast Asia, and highlights the fragility of natural habitats for animals such as pangolins, tapirs, mousedeers, orangutans and tigers. It takes learning about, interacting with and contributing positively to the environment to a whole new, innovative level.

Positive Action

  • Museums and exhibitions are great places to learn about environmental issues, especially if wishing to engage children in a fun and interactive way. Check out what’s on in your local area and support events that are happening - even better if proceeds are going to a worthy cause.
  • When people are in nature they feel connected to it and want to protect it. Take the time to visit national parks, wildlife sanctuaries, go hiking or camping and make nature an essential part of your life.
  • Get involved in nature-based campaigns that have a positive outcome such as Clean Up Australia Day, National Tree Day and Earth Hour.

Sources

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